Youth homelessness focus at Urdd Eisteddfod

Cardiff University policy expert Dr Andrew Connell will tell the Urdd Eisteddfod how youth homelessness can be eradicated in Wales.

Dr Connell, of the Cardiff University-based Wales Centre for Public Policy, will say that ongoing support must be provided at the earliest stage if Wales is serious about tackling the issue.

His talk, at the Cardiff University tent at 11:00 on Saturday 1 June , references research by the Centre which responded to a Welsh Government call to eradicate youth homelessness in Wales within a decade.

Dr Connell said: “The best way to end youth homelessness is to stop young people becoming homeless in the first place. The aim has to be to reduce the chances of young people becoming homeless, to help them keep their current housing if they are at risk of losing it, and to help them access stable, appropriate housing quickly if they do become homeless.

“That means looking at a whole range of factors, from social and economic structures, through the way that services like health, care and criminal justice work, to the personal and family circumstances of individual young people.

“Crucially, the evidence that we’ve published suggests that identifying young people who are at risk of becoming homeless at a very early stage, perhaps even before they themselves realise it, is possible and can make a real difference.”

The Wales Centre for Public Policy worked with leading international and Welsh homelessness experts to produce a review of the best evidence from around the world on how to eradicate youth homelessness.

The Welsh Government drew on the Centre’s work when it announced details of an extra 10m to tackle youth homelessness in November 2018.